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Dance Lessons in Mabank TX | towerwebsites.com/dancinglinda

 

Some Dances I Have Written

Many callers end up choreographing dances that work for a particular dance they're calling when they can't find the right dance to fit the slot they're programming, and these are a few of mine.  I apologize if any dance listed below is a duplicate of your dance, but I didn't find the dance published anywhere (and I've got nearly every book out there that I am aware of), so I didn't try to plagiarize.  Forgive me -- correct me.  Thank you!

I hate to have to come up with a name for a dance,and some of these dances are just variations of other published dances that I've modified.  So I named them after my family name (sort of) -- Mrosko = Mr. Osko.   (It's Wendish -- www.texancultures.utsa.edu/publications/texansoneandall/wendish  or http://members.aol.com/BeallComp/wends )

MR. OSKO’S HALLOWEEN (Dup Imp)

 

16           Pass thru across; Swing Neighbor on opposite side

16           Women cross passing right shoulders; Swing Partner

16           Promenade across; Chain to Neighbor

16           Couple 1 do a ½ Figure 8 above; Lines Forward & Back

 

NOTE:  Written to fill a need.

 

 

FUZZY COZY (Dup Imp)

(Written for Fiddler's Dream 2002 Dance Camp for the Contradance Scramble by Linda Mrosko, John Rapp, David Salonimer, Karen Carlile, Phillip McPheeters)

 

16           Circle Left once; Swing neighbor and end facing down in a line of 4

8            Down 4 steps - get "cozy" - arch with Neighbor, turn your back to neighbor &

                turn under your own arch, ending facing up

8            Return up the hall; outside couples (Couple 1) arch over Couple 2 in the middle of

                the line to form cloverleaf

8            Cloverleaf circle left -- DO NOT DROP HANDS!

8            Unwind the clover to make an inside-out circle -- follow your left hand and circle

                Left halfway

16           Pull partner into a swing in the middle and end facing next couple

 

 

LA BASTRINGUE CONTRA (Dup Imp) (July 1997)

(I always liked La Bastringue -- turned it into a contra dance)

 

16           Long Lines Forward & Back 2x

16           Hands 4, Circle Left; Circle Right

16           Men arch left hand & twirl neighbor lady into a swing on the side

16           Promenade across & back (or R&L Thru across & back; or Ladies Chain across &

                back)

 

 

LA BA CONTRA (Dup Imp) (July 1997)

 

16           Circle Left once; Balance the Ring 2x

16           Men arch left hand & Twirl neighbor lady into a swing on the side

16           Chain across & back (or R&L Thru across & back)

16           Actives Balance & Swing

 

 

NACOGDOCHES (Dup Imp)

 

16           Star Right; Star Left (I prefer handshake stars as opposed to wrist-lock stars)

16           Women change places (4); Men change places (4) ; Repeat ending w/all in their

                orig. places (8)

16           Circle L; Circle Right

16           Balance in a Ring 2x; Hold onto Partner, let go of Neighbors & with Partner, all

                "Zig Zag" – slide Left w/partner 2 small steps, take one step or so forward, then

                slide Right two small steps to face the next couple)

 

NOTE: I need as many easy dances as I can find to use with large groups of beginners since I work with lots of beginners all over the place (they always end up wanting a "contra" dance -- most of which are just too hard, take too long to explain, and don't make sense to large groups who are all beginners or may have only 1-2 experienced dancers in the crowd).  I'm always concerned with progression, since that always seems to be one of the hardest things for beginners to understand (along with end effects).  This dance was a lot of fun for a beginner group I worked with at the first contradance in Nacogdoches in February 2007.  I got the idea from a Sicilian Circle I ran across.

 

 

POT O’GOLD (Dup Imp)

 

16           Down the hall 4 in line (Couple 1 in the center); turn alone; Return and cast off

16           Right & Left thru across and back

16           Balanced Square Thru 4 (give Partner right hand first & balance; pull by partner,

                pull by left with Neighbor; Balance Partner again, pull by right, pull by left with

                Neighbor) ("Give your good hand to your Partner, and your other hand to your

                Neighbor")

16           Couple 1 Balance & Swing

 

NOTE: Written to fill a need. This was written for an "Irish" theme dance where one couple gets the satisfaction of finding the "gold" (getting to swing) and the other couple ends up disappointed (and many dancers do feel the disappointment, because they have the wind up, but not the satisfaction). The beginning of the dance is all about the search for the gold – looking down the hall, across the hall, all around the hall.

 

 

FOUNDER'S DANCE (Dup Imp) (Feb. 2001-written to celebrate NTTDS Founder's day dance)

 

16           Pass Neighbor by Right, turn your back to your Partner across & back past Partner;

                Repeat till all home

16           Circle Left; Women cross passing Right, Men Cross passing Right, Women Cross again,

                Men Cross again

16           Couple 1 Gypsy & Swing in the middle; face down

16           With Couple 1 in the middle, all go down the hall 4 in line; turn individually & return, say

                Bye-bye & Couple 1 turn back to face the next

 

 

Y2 BECKET (Becket)

 

16           Circle Left ¾; pass thru up or down; DSD next Neighbor

16           Star Left with original Neighbors; Swing the one you DSD’d

16           Men Allemande Left 1½; Hey ½ (Partner pass R)

16           Balance & Swing Partner

 

Written for Fiddler’s Dream Midnight Madness 2000 dance camp at Lake Texoma, on the Oklahoma side.

 

 

MR. OSKO'S REEL (Dup Imp)(2005)

Tune:    Reel

16           Circle Left; DSD Neighbor

16           Circle Left; Swing Neighbor

16           Ladies Chain across and back

16           Lines Forward and Back; Couple 1 Swing in the middle; face down

 

 

MR. OSKO’S JIG (Dup Imp) (2005)

Tune:    Jig

16           Balance the Ring twice; Circle Left once

16           Balance the Ring twice; Circle Left again

16           Pass Right by your Neighbor & Swing the next Neighbor

16           Lines Forward & Back; Couple 1 Swing

 

 

MR. OSKO’S HOLIDAY (Dup Imp)(December 2005)

 

16           Balance & Swing Neighbor; face down the hall

16           Down the hall 4 in line; turn as couples; Return & cast

16           Long lines forward and back; Partners gypsy in the middle

16           All Balance & Swing Partner in the middle

 

Note:  I wanted an improper dance that ended in a balance and swing with partner; couldn't find one right away, so made this one up.

 

 

MR. OSKO'S PING PONG (Dup Imp) (1997)

(I had a Western Square Dance term, Ping Pong Circulate, in mind)

8            THE SERVE:  Ladies dance into the center (4) to an ocean wave (THE NET)

                along; Balance right & left (4)

8            Ladies SPIN around indiv. to their Right once (4) end facing Partner—Balance

                Partner (THE BOUNCE) (4)...

16           Short swing with Partner and face across; Long Lines Forward & Back

8            THE RETURN:  Men dance into the center (4) to an ocean wave (THE NET)

                along; Balance right & left (4)

8            Men SPIN round indiv. to their Right once (4); end facing Neighbor -- Balance

                Neighbor (THE BOUNCE) (4)...

16           Short swing w/Neighbor & face across; pass thru & California Twirl Neighbor

                [ALTERNATIVE:  R&L Thru]

 

 

NELLA WAFER (2007) (Sicilian Circle) (Gender Free)

 

16          In a ring, Balance in and out (or side to side) & Petronella twirl to the right 2x

16          Balance & Petronella twirl to the right 2x more

8            Facing partner, join hands with neighbors on either side of you so you have 2

circles – the outside circle facing in, inside circle facing out – Circle L

8            Drop hands and make a quarter turn right and walk back to your partner

8            2-hand turn partner once around & face the same opposite couple

8            Hang onto partner and Zig Zag left then right to face the next couple

 

 

MR. OSKO’S WALTZ (Circle)(Gender Free-No Partners necessary–No Progression)  Tune:   32-bar waltz

 

A1          Circle Left with 8 waltz steps

A2          Circle Right with 8 waltz steps

B1           Turn Single w/4 waltz steps to the Right; turn single w/4 waltz steps to the Left

B2           Join hands in a circle, Forward & Back 2x (2 steps in, 2 steps out, 2 steps in, 2

                steps out)

 

 

CATCH SOMEBODY (3 behind 3 like spokes of a wheel in large circle; if any spares, they go in the ctr, hovering) (1999 or 2000) 

Tune: Spirited

16           Forward 4 steps; clap 3x, stomp 3x; Repeat

8            Center person, elbow Right with the left-hand partner 1½

8            New center person, elbow Left with the Right-hand partner 1½ (NOTE: brand

                new center dancer ends facing opp LOD as his/her Partners); (If there are spare

                dances, let them know what’s coming – "Spares get ready")

16           Outside/End 2 dancers make 2-hand arch; centers & spares walk under arches

8            At signal "Catch Somebody," arches are dropped over whoever is nearest & circle

                2-hands Left round "victim"

8            2-hand Circle Right; end in a line with victim as new center person

 

Suggested Call:

Forward 4 (2); Clap & stomp (2); Forward 4 (2); Clap & stomp (2)

Turn Right on the inside, 1½ (2)

Now Left on the outside, 1½ (2)

Spares get ready! (2)

Arch & duck (10)

Catch somebody & Circle Left (8)

Now Circle Right (2); Line up 3, go fwd 4 (2)

 

Written for no particular reason other than using as another 3 person mixer. A combination of Thiel’s Trio and London Bridge. My friend, Karen Comer, liked it so much, she asked me to call it at her wedding and she named it "Catch Somebody."

 

 

MR. OSKO'S SPINDLETOP (Random Couples in Varsouvienne promenade hold)

 

16           Promenade; find another couple and ...

16           Circle Left; Circle Right

16           Balance; Petronella Twirl to the Right; Balance again; Get Cozy (Men arch their

                Right hands, Women duck under Cozynella-style)

16           Fly to the Right; Women trade places back to back (ending up against their

                Neighbor’s arm), Men turn round (to face the opposite direction); Fly to the Left

                (keep this lady-on your right-& promenade)

 

Depending on how long I get to work with a totally beginner group, if it’s 2 hours or more, I usually use this dance – and it has always worked and the dancers seem to enjoy it.

 

 

PLAZA ARTS TEMPESTE (June 2006)

(Written in honor of NTTDS's move to the Plaza Arts Theater in Carrollton, Texas)

 

FORMATION:  4 couples to start per set, sets of 4 couples lined up down the hall; each lady on her partner's right side.  This dance progresses just like a contra.  2 couples (center/head couples) are facing down the hall in a line of 4; the other 2 couples (side couples) are on either side of the center/head couples, but standing slightly further down the hall.  The center/head couples will dance with their nearest side couple, then progress on to the next side couples they come to.  As the center/head couples reach the bottom and have no one else to dance with, they will fall into their nearest side position and become a side couple, waiting to dance with the next center/head couples coming down the hall.  Side couples who reach the top, will "fold in" and face down the hall and wait for their turn to dance as center/head couples.

 

8            Head couples go down the hall 8 steps

8            Head couples back up 4 steps (end lined up with orig side couples the first time),

                & fold out to face the nearest side cpl

16           Hands 4, Circle Left once; Swing Opp (end swing facing partner -- head cpls are

                now on the outside)

16           Hands 4, Circle Left once; Swing Partner (end facing opp couple -- head couples

                end facing in, sides facing out)

16           R&L Thru w/a Power Turn (Sides can do a regular courtesy turn, but Heads will

                courtesy turn an extra half turn to face other head couple in the middle); Heads

                only do a R&L thru with each other w/a Power Turn to end facing down the hall.

 

NOTE:  Next time thru the dance, heads will walk down the hall past the next side couples and back up to them to circle/swing, etc., so the dance progresses like a contra.  If the sets begin to drift down, it's because the sides need to step up a little while the heads are going down the hall.  Heads will either have to take smaller steps down, or big steps backing up.  Inspired by Vermont Tempeste which I danced at a square dance convention in San Antonio.


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